I’m at the point where I actually do need to shave every week. Not that I have enough facial hair to grow anything worthwhile, not even to get the “scruffy” kind of look. But if I don’t shave every week, I have those awkward hairs sticking out, just enough to be able to say to myself “Look how much more I have!” but not enough to actually grow anything like sideburns or a mustache.
I want sideburns. Not giant Elvis style mutton-chop sideburns, but some small sideburns that drop down and help masculinize my face. Slash, it would make it a lot easier to square them off if my hairline didn’t end at the top of my ears. I feel like it looks weird on me. I want sideburns already dammit!
But unlike my brother, that isn’t where my facial hair is coming in the quickest. Rather, the fastest coming in is my (hopefully to be) mustache. I can’t really complain. I want the ability to grow a nice, carefully groomed, ‘stache. Ideally, it won’t be a creepy one, but the sibling rivalry side of me really wants to have a mustache, as my oldest brother can only now just barely grow one. One up him on something, as he is much taller, stronger, bigger, and has less hair. I defiantly beat him on the hair on top of my head bit…
Everywhere else, my hair is coming in thicker, and darker. My legs are the most noticeable, there is a lot more, and a lot thicker. Staring at my ass every week for my injection, I notice the increase there as well. Even on my chest, there is more fuzz, though it is all still blonde (in rather stark contrast to my very dark hair.) But my face? I feel like it’s the turtle in the race against the rabbit, but I have yet to find out if there is going to be any winning with it.
Because regardless, I want more, because I’m at the point where I do need to think about shaving regularly. And if I have to be shaving, I want it to at least be worth it.
Grabbing inspiration from Emma, I am posting a recipe on here, because 1- I’m hungry, 2- it’s tasty, and 3- I feel like it. Also, be warned that unless you are feeding a large number of hungry people, you will have leftovers. It keeps well in the fridge, or if you make three trays at a time, you can also freeze them before cooking to make another time.
So, here is a good, basic recipe for a vegetarian Lasagna.
- Preheat oven to 325º
- Lasagna pan
- 1 pkg Lasagna noodles (If you can find it, Barilla makes no boil lasagna noodles that are really good, but any will work.)
- 4-5 jars Tomato sauce
- 2 big pkgs shredded Mozzarella cheese
- 2 big pkgs shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1 big pkg shredded other kind of cheese, like provolone or asiago
- 3 containers of whole milk ricotta cheese
- 3-6 XL or Jumbo eggs
- Mixture of Italian spices (basil, rosemary, oregano, tarragon, thyme, garlic, sage)
Stir the ricotta cheese, the eggs and the Italian spices together well. Texture should be fairly smooth, but not totally because ricotta cheese is similar to cottage cheese. Spices will be visible. I prefer to put a lot of spices in, but do what seems best to you. I use whatever spices are on hand.
Spray pan well with Pam, or other such cooking spray, before starting, both the bottoms and the sides. Note- My method of lasagna, is essentially architectural. I BUILD lasagna, it is not meant to be made.
Cover bottom of pan with tomato sauce. It should take about half a jar to two-thirds of a jar. (1cup – 1-½ cups of sauce). Next layer noodles slightly overlapping. Make noodle layer cover sauce.
Next, put down a layer of the ricotta mixture spread evenly. Then sprinkle a layer of each of the other cheeses you have ending with the parmesan.
Then, start the process all over again starting with a layer of the tomato sauce.
Usually you get through either two or three full rounds depending on the depth of your pan. After the last full layer, cover with tomato sauce and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
Cover with tin foil. Cook on middle to top shelf of oven. Cook at 325 until the top is bubbly. This is usually for 1-½ hours and then remove the foil and continue to cook for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and let sit for at least 10 – 15 minutes before cutting.
For the Jesus aspect of this entry, take a look at these fabulous dildos. As for the rest, keep on reading.
The GBLTQQIA..etc. community(ies) often have severe issues with religions. Surprise, surprise, being called evil, told we’re going to hell, and other forms of outcasting make us generally distrustful, dissatisfied, or have us just plain walk away. Even in my life, growing up a fairly secular, reform Jew, gender was restrictive and transpeople were silent and invisible, a total absence.
Yet, my brother recently went on Birthright and came back determined to do exactly what my mother fears: become more orthodox in his practicing of Judaism. Jointly, he is really dedicated, and incredibly protective of me, his youngest sibling. Yet, he wants to go to a synagogue where there is the divide between men and women, where I could probably not even enter because where the hell would I sit? The thing is, for me family is incredibly important, there isn’t really a way to be in my family and have any other attitude. I would want to go, and experience my brother’s choice of synagogue, support his way of being, his choices, his representation of Judaism.
And at the synagogues my brother would want to go to, I could not do that. Especially as I start passing more, my deep voice, face in need of a shave, and general male appearance would not be welcome on the women’s side. My body though, is clearly born female, and thus would not be welcome on the men’s side. Conservative and Reform Judaism have answers to many of my questions, they don’t divide men and women, they have specific prayers and methods for changing a transperson’s hebrew name, they even now are ordaining gay rabbis. Orthodoxy though, still is much more problematic. With the years of midrash and talmudic expansion of the Torah (aka- the traditions of Judaism beyond what is explicity in the Jewish bible) Orthodoxy has much more to work against. Women and men sit in divided synagogues, homosexuality is wrong, etc.
So I decided to track down a Hasidic rabbi with some knowledge of queerness, and start asking questions about a way for me to be able to do something as simple as visiting my brother’s (undefined future) synagogue. Decided to track down a Hasidic rabbi once I’m passing that is…
Though I admit, it isn’t just for my brother that I’m contemplating these things. Judaism is my heritage sure, but it goes beyond that. Judaism has had a profound impact on my view of gender, especially what is acceptable for men to (or not to) do. As I’m looking around for masculine role models, I’ve come across all sorts of things I have no interest in. Arnold Schwarzenegger of the terminator movies is not my kind of masculinity. I’m sorry, I have no interest in being a body builder, and I’m on the short side for a guy. It isn’t my style. I have no interest in the macho-pick-up-artist masculinity either (for a great critic of PUAs, see this blog entry from genderbitch.) For Jews, it is perfectly acceptable to be a geek. In fact, we encourage it. Think, doctors, lawyers, we recognize and celebrate intellectualism. That aspect at least, is a version of masculinity I can support.
Yet Judaism can be really divisive. As can all religions… Yeah, this is me, still thinking it all over.
Well, not everyone thinks my voice has dropped. Well, the fact that I am up to a full dose should help that speed up a bit. As well as everything else.
I haven’t told my grandmother about me going on T yet. She wasn’t entirely happy when I told her I’m trans, which wasn’t really surprising but it was very much one of those “I will always love you” sort of moments. I know how lucky I am, that no matter what happens my family will always be there. They might not understand, or accept my life, but they will always at least tolerate it, and always love me. Actual acceptance or understanding… well I’m working on it. But telling my grandmother about T will be a bit of a headache. I’m going to have to go through and explain that yes, I’ve researched it. Yes, I’m going to a good, accredited health center for my hormones. Yes, I’m getting the blood tests, and moreover they have continually come back telling me I am healthy. She will continue to worry though, and call up my mother, who doesn’t actually support my decision to go on T but will at least say that she thinks I’ve been responsible about it.
My cousin sent me an email the other day, about her son. He’s an adorable little kid, and this comes from a person who truly cannot stand kids under the age of 9. So, his mom was at the ice rink to pick up her older child, and ran into one of my old coaches (yes, I used to figure skate.) She made a comment about how old I’ve gotten, as older cousins are wont to do, and used my birth name because that is how my coach knew me. My little cousin said “MOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM…” and proceeded to correct her in front of my old coach, who didn’t seem to notice, or ask. My cousin promptly sent me an email telling me all this, and ended it with “If only the whole world was as accepting as young children, eh?”
Because that is true. My mother, who is far beyond liberal, a social worker, and generally has almost more issues with the gender binary than I do… has issues with the fact I am not her daughter. She still thinks of me as her daughter, and claims to me that it is to distinguish me from my brothers. Which I don’t entirely mind because it is a compliment not quite to be lumped in with them, and its the only language she has to describe how her relationship with me is different from them. But in the end she actually considers it a failure. My mother sat down and told me that the fact she did not raise me to be a woman is a failure to her as a feminist. I was too shocked at the time to really react, and since then I’ve realized it’s not my problem, its hers. Despite how great so many of her attitudes are, despite how amazingly well she handles anything with regard to other people, when it comes to me, her child, it is a failure. And in the end, that isn’t my problem.
Similarly it isn’t my problem that I have family members who are toxic sociopaths, institutionalized, successfully married, work for ‘the man’, trying to become more orthodox, atheist… whatever. Because from someone’s perspective almost anything is a problem, but it isn’t mine. I can be there for them, I can be supportive of each of them as individuals, but their battles are not mine.
Now if only my family ever realized that my battles are also, not theirs. Be supportive sure, but please let me live my life and make my own mistakes, create my own success.
I know that many of them do believe that me going on T is a mistake, and that later I will want to go off of it, but that attitude drastically misses two facts. First, just because I want it now, and see myself wanting to be on T for the rest of my life, does not mean I don’t realize I might change my mind. Sure, it could happen. If it does, I will deal with the ramifications of the reversal of the transition process, and take pride in the ways my body realigns itself, similar to how now I am taking pride in how it changes to more of what I want it to become. Because in the end, that is how I think about things, which is the second part. Namely, that I take things as they come. If I change my mind, then I will accept that I had wanted this now, wanted it desperately, and it has made a huge, positive impact on my life so far, and its only been around three months. Changing that decision will not mean a mistake, but that it would no longer be the right decision. No matter what I decide though, it is my decision how I want to handle my body, my presentation as I go through life.